Sunday, April 30, 2006

The Ford hates it when this happens.

Then again, it's vaguely reassuring when real life resembles an Elisha Cuthbert movie.

If only it was "Old School."

A good day:

1.) Tigers win 18-1 with The Ford in the stands (part of a planned 5 games in 6 days in the Motor City), and The Ford's brother from another mother (and father) gets in the game in the eighth inning, when the game's already decided.

2.) A not half-bad party thrown to celebrate The Official Newspaper's final Saturday sans edition, notable for the free beer and the buffalo chicken pieces and pitas with hummus. Did The
Ford mention the free beer? He may have even eaten some carrots and tomatoes while making small talk with various coworkers who don't work nights. Though if The Ford has to recount the C.V. of how he got from WSU to Detroit again, he might have cards printed up. Did he mention the free beer?

3.) A nightcap at The Official Bar that stretched well into OT, thanks to Comedy Central's broadcast of "South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut." Kudos to: Lark, singing waitress exordinaire who demonstrated outstanding knowledge of South Park, down to a dead-on Cartman impression; to friendly neighborhood beer slinger Vaughn, who may or may not have made up for his defense of Todd Bertuzzi with allowing The Ford to watch said movie in its entirety well after typical bar closing time, complete with bonus beer; to Trey Parker and Matt Stone, for making a movie hilarious (and full of quotable and sing-along-able moments) fully 7 years after its original release.

The night, by the numbers: (If The Ford insists on using this breakout style at work, it'll probably suffice for The Official Blog.)
18 -- Runs scored in 3 hours by the Tigers, on no fewer than 23 hits.
15 -- Times it occured to The Ford that the Mariners GAVE AWAY Carlos Guillen for nothing, as The Big Wheezy (or The Iron Lung, if you, dear reader, prefer) homered in each of his first two at-bats.
4 -- Detroit teams doing SOMETHING Saturday, as evidenced by the most recent page by The Ford. (See how seamlessly he pimps out The Official Portfolio, despite promising earlier never to discuss newspapers.)
1 -- Detroit teams actually watched by The Ford, despite three of the teams having games/festivities downtown Saturday.
45 -- Minutes spent looking for the house hosting the party, thanks to Mapquest's inability to distinguish between a "slight left" and using a "turnaround point" to make a full left turn.
11 -- Beers imbibed in 6 1/2 hours, which The Ford is happy to report is well under federal binge drinking standards. Unless you exclude the hour The Ford spent in transit between drinking site No. 1 and drinking site No. 2. In which case The Ford is a big ol' drunk.
2 -- Periods of Hockey Night In Canada The Ford managed to catch on CBC.
8 -- Minutes of Hockey Night In Canada spent reviewing whether a player falling down as he slid into the crease, pulled down by a defenseman, was able to kick the puck into the net. The Ford's still on the fence.
15 -- Times The Ford wondered why all Comedy Central's promos for next week's "Secret Stash" presentation of "The Sweetest Thing" feature only Cameron Diaz. C'mon. Sure, she's the star, but you've also got uber-hotties Christina Applegate (aka "Tits McGee") and Selma Blair (aka "The Girl Who Made Out With Sarah Michelle Gellar In 'Cruel Intentions' ")
32 -- Times Lark provided a perfect line from South Park, 45 seconds before it was delivered on screen.
10 -- Times The Ford was able to come up with his own South Park lines, an impressive effort, considering the inebriated handicap he was working with.
4 -- Approximate hours spent in The Official Bar.
2.75 -- Approximate hours spent composing this blog entry. (Though, to be fair, said 2.75 hours also include a decent amount of IM'ing.)

Saturday, April 29, 2006

Things you didn't know about The Ford:

1.) The Ford, despite his liberal Washingtonian upbringing, is generally a free-market economist.

Which is why he never felt too bad about the Winnipeg Jets heading to Phoenix, a move made 10 years ago this week. Especially when a similar move gave him an NHL team to root for in Dallas.

And yet...

Phoenix doesn't seem to care that much about hockey, new arena be damned.

Winnipeg seems to care a great deal.

10 years ago, small-market Winnipeg couldn't really support a team.

Now? It's a new NHL, baby, complete with salary cap and affordable, lovable, huggable stars. (Though The Ford wonders how long that'll last when rookies Ovechkin, Crosby and Phaneuf are already being described as "$7-million-a-year players." REmember, NHL, trying to pay players money you don't really have is what shut down the league for a year in the first place.)

Now? The Penguins are talking about moving in a year or so. Screw Vegas, Portland, San Antonio and Seattle. Let's put 'em in Winnipeg.

Viva Canada!

2.) (Remember, we're working on a theme here...) The Ford feels bad about staring Scarlett Johansson's big American bosom on his computer screen, but damn it, he wants to figure out if this is her.

Oddly, he feels less bad if it's not actually Ms. Johansson.

Of course, The Ford has felt bad about lusting over Ms Johansson ever since she popped up (and then went down?) in "The Man Who Wasn't There," a highly underrated Coen Bros. flick.

3.) The Ford is ready for some more horse politics.

Oh, wait, we're still just under two years from the next PRIMARIES.

So, then, it's probably a good thing Al Gore's NOT running. He just talks about the environment a lot, and in a bizarre way, enjoys Richard Nixon comparisons.

Is it too much to ask the Democratic party to provide some new candidates? John Edwards? Tom Vilsack? That Montana governor a certain Seattle resident keeps e-mailing me about? Whatever.
Let's just agree to avoid Kerry, Gore, or Clinton. 'Cause they seem pretty likely to get their brains beat out by Jimmy McGOP in a couple of years.

Unless we can somehow get Chelsea Clinton to run. Granted, she's not technically old enough, but The Ford's sure we can work around this, now that she seems to have worked out the whole "hotness vs. curly hair" thing.
Mmm. Presidential daughter....

See, this is what happens when The Ford ends up debating the mechanics of representative democracy in the wee hours at The Official Bar. The politics and the poo-nanny get a bit muddled. Although The Ford's pretty sure that if his brain and his, um, "not-the-brain" ever started working together, he could get some shit done.

Whatever that means.

(Is there a better word The Ford could have used? Poontang? Puss? OPP? PYT? All probably accurate, and yet, not as funny. The Ford knows of a site for more euphemisms, but this is a family site, don'cha'know. That is, if your family's into hot chicks, arguments for smoking, and rants about sports. The Ford's is. Go figure.)

Friday, April 28, 2006

The Ford is neither an aspiring rapper, nor a would-be rap producer.

And yet, Atlanta calls.

Smokey Robinson and the rest of Motown are crying the tears of a clown.

More evidence that Esquire, while generally being a fine magazine, was on crack when they tabbed Jessica Biel as the sexiest woman alive.

Britain took a respectable swing at the thing, though The Ford wonders if they weren't a weee bit biased in putting three Brits in the top five.

You make the call, from their top 5:

1. Keira Knightley.

2.Keeley Hazel. (This is the only one probably not entirely safe for work. But you probably guessed that already.)

3. Scarlett Johanssen.

4. Angelina Jolie.

5. Kelly Brook.

Not a bad one in the bunch, really, especially considering the exclusion of Ms. Biel. No word on where she finished, but it wasn't the top 10, according to this story, notable also for its ridiculous localization of a national story.

"At number 26 is Oscar-winning actress Charlize Theron, who is going out with Irish actor Stuart Townsend, who starred in a movie about the Shankill Butchers."

Just what The Ford was thinking.

For more perspective, some past winners. Dig the Gillian Anderson nod.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Yes, once the U.S. and the U.S.S.R. competed in the missile gap.

Turns out China's now competing with the U.S. in another, er, missile gap.

And making up the difference, to boot.

To China, The Ford can only say ... wait for it, wait for it ... Bra-vo!

Or would you prefer "Breast wishes?"

Or is that too much, um, flattery?

OK, The Ford's done.

Cross my heart.

(On an unrelated note, has anyone considered that perhaps the true downfall of the U.S.S.R. was how much of a pain it is to type "U.S.S.R."? I mean, c'mon, that's an awful lot of capital lettters and periods. Especially when compared to "U.S." Half the caps, half the periods, shoot, we're 50% ahead on productivity before we've even gotten away from the name of our respective countries. Which might mean single-capped, no-perioded China's got the true advantage, even beyond their mysteriously burgeoning bosoms.)

The Ford is all about The Sheed (also known as The Official Rasheed of The Official Blog of The Ford), now that he's made the long journey from Portland to Detroit, the long journey back to "covering" him on a daily basis. Of course, this Sheed is a kinder, gentler, more lovable Sheed. The same number of technical fouls, but it's all good when the team's got a couple of Eastern Conference titles.

It frees us up to enjoy The Sheed's more, well, enjoyable statements.

Like this one: "I'll go wherever my shot'll take me. If it's down there in the low post, I'ma go to the low post. If it's a mid-range 'J', I'ma knock that down. It don't matter. Anywhere on that 94 (the length of the basketball court) is my range."

Good to get that cleared up.

And yes, The Ford once again pimped out a story from The Official Newspaper, for the second day in a row. In his defense, he'd have done it twice if he could have gotten instant access to the whole Niklas Kronwall/Swedish alphabet sidebar right way, rather than just plagiarizing it with an almost inaccurate retelling of it unsourced. Wait, was that supposed to be a defense?

Eh, screw it. The Ford'll just back out the door quietly and leave you with this challenge from the good folks at Pilsner Urquell, as well as the good folks at (Their mott0: "Seeming to think we're smarter than The Ford since 1953.")

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

The Ford wants a "Free Bob" T-shirt.

Oh yeah, Bob's a moose.

Moose head, actually.

Read about it here.

Oh, and here.

And then check this out and decide that either Canadians as a people , or just the staff of the Toronto Sun, have way too much time on their hands.

Or you could just get the Free Bob news all in one place: Here.

When do we get to start openly mocking countries?

'Cause The Ford knows he's supposed to be all multi-culti and shit, but the Swedes are kinda asking for it.

This just in: They're cool with the letter "W."

Keep in mind, this is a country inordinately fond of the umlaut. (Not, of course, as fond of the umlaut as the Norwegians, so they've got something going for them, at least. Besides the Swedish Bikini Team. A team that, frankly, provides a lot of extra credit for Sweden, in The Ford's, um, eyes.)

But W?

That was a letter too far for the Swedes. Or Svedes. Whatever. Or, according to the Swedish Academy before this week, Vhatwver. (Oh, and these are the jerks who pick the Nobel Prize winner in Literature. So maybe now Alice Walker can expect a call? And Alice Valker won't have to field any awkward calls from Swedish fans of literature)

What makes this double ridiculous is that Swedes have been using the "W" (the double-V, as they like to call it...) for generations. Red Wings defenseman Niklas Kronwall faced a yearly challenge trying to enter the U.S., with ID that listed him at Niklas Kronvall, and a visa listing him as Niklas Kronwall. (For what it's worth, said discrepancy was equally frustrating to a plethora of copy editors trying to check crazy spellings for foreign names.) For years, his family insisted they were Kronwalls, while the Swedish Academy insisted they were Kronvalls.

Liberation at last.

Yes, finally, the Kronwalls of the Swedish Empire can hold their heads high, no more to wonder wearily when W would wow the Swedish Academy.


Finally, as a personal service to the millions of Swedes reading The Official Blog who were wavering on the wonderfulness of the W, The Ford presents The Seven Official "W's" of The Official Blog of The Ford:

1.) Weezer.
The Ford loves these kooky alt-rock wonders, worn-out wunderkinder though they might be. The best Weezer album? Easily, it's Weezer. (The green isotope, natch, though, y'know, on occasion, o-wee-oo, The Ford feels just like Buddy Holly.)

2.) Weinhard's.
As in Henry, The Ford's top-ranked Northwestern beer. Sure, there's plenty of microbrews from Washington (The Official Home State, but it still just missed the cut for "Official W" status), but few are as purely enjoyable, going down smooth and easily in a tiny 12-oz. bottle from Oregon that's part stubby, part long neck.

3.) WSU.
Duh. Any "W" discussion's gotta include The Official Alma Mater of The Official Blog of The Ford. You knew this was coming. The only question was when. Go Cougs!

4.) Stacey Williams.
Yeah, not a well-known supermodel, but a staple in the SI swimsuit issues The Ford ... perused, let's say, as an impressionable teen. This shot, in particular, made a lasting impression on The Ford. (OK, it's a stretch to make her an Official W, but, well, The Ford's gotta meet his federally mandated quota of Grade A sweatermeat -- that's the USDTA, if you're keeping score at home -- or they'll take away his blogging license.)

5.) Willie Nelson.
Dude, it's Willie. There's no explanation needed.

6.) "What I deserve."
Kelly. Willis. Can. Sing. Yes, she's hot. But she can also belt out a solid tune. Her best album, and probably one of the best country albums of the 1990s. The Ford knows that's not saying much when the Nashville sound is basically adult comtempory -- we're looking at you, Faith Hill -- but really, this is just a great, great album.

7.) Wonderfalls.
Quirky, bizarre, brilliant show from Fox, which did its usual impeccable job of greenlighting a great show, and then nixing it after about 4 episodes. Worth watching, and luckily, you probably can, with a satellite dish or decent digital cable; LOGO, desperate for gay-friendly programming that's not a documentary (the sister's a lesbian, more or less), gave it a second life a while back. WATCH IT.

So, there ya have it, Swedes. All you need to know about the letter "W", in one handy blog post. Don't say The Ford never gave you nothing.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

A short story:
The Ford buys a laptop.
The Ford signs up for a music downloading service, which is pretty decent. (The Official Music Downloading Service of The Official Blog of The Ford)
The Official Service greets The Ford each evening with new suggestions of music he might like, based on his previous downloads.
After a fiery night spent trying to convince The Official Service that while he did enjoy the single "Doin' It," he did not wish to listen to the entire L.L. Cool J catalog, not being a Lady prone to Loving Cool James, he thought he'd gotten the damn thing trained.
Days and days went by, with excellent recommendations of Weezer, Modest Mouse, The Roots and Ben Folds.
All albums The Ford had already downloaded, but, hey, at least he wasn't having to fight through endless L.L. Cool J recommendations. (Not to self: Resist the urge to download "Deepest Bluest" just for the hell of it.)
And then today, The Ford gets these recommendations:
Billy Joel.
The Postal Service.
Gordon Lightfoot.

All good. All artists The Ford has downloaded plenty of.

And Sarah McLachlan.

Ms. MacLachlan isn't bad, to tell the truth, even if her music's a bit, um, annoying. But she gets points for a) being hot, and b) spelling her name with the-fewest-necessary letters.

Wait, where was The Ford going with all this?

Oh yeah, it was gonna be a thing on how The Official Service believes his cajones have withered away.

Eh, it's probably just been talking to his TiVo, anyway. Can't believe anything that thing tells ya.

Part of the whole "blogging" experience, aside from stealing images, avoiding pop-up ads and obsessively looking for links, always looking, surfing, searching...aaaagh...what do you people want from The Ford?

Anyway, part of the blogging experience, The Ford is told, is visting other, smarter people's blogs and leaving comments on said blogs.

And, as hard as it is to believe, The Ford is actually able to find such people.

This is not the tale of that search, or of those people.

C'mon, focus, dear reader.

No, this is the tale of The Ford's effort to get an avitar to show up on one such blog, without having his lovely headshot show up once more.

So he goes to the recommended site,, where he's doing OK, understanding everything, even allowing himself to dream of his own Gravitar. (Which, yes, would be The Official Gravitar of The Official Blog of The Ford.)

Yes, all was peachy, until The Ford hit this paragraph:
"To request a gravatar from our servers, you simply add an image to your comments area with an "src" attribute that points to our gravatar image generator and includes an MD5 hash of the commenter's email address."


The Ford's gonna get right on that. As soon as he understands what the hell he's supposed to do.

(This, The Ford supposes, is the major drawback of reading smarter people's blogs. They're smarter.)

And so, there will be no Official Gravitar. Nor even an Official Avatar.


Sunday, April 23, 2006

Almost no phrase and its subsequent explanation has gotten The Ford into as much trouble in his life as "Reggie Cleveland All-Stars," coined by Bill Simmons.
Here, now, is a decent explanation, especially if you just take the athletes picked out by Simmons.
All the others should be taken with a grain of salt. (Kevin Kasper's a good example. C'mon. Dude's name is Kasper. As in Ghost-comma-Friendly. And so he is. And blond to boot.)

Well, just for the heck of it, The Ford decided to see how overweight the Cleveland Indians are. He's sure there's some logical reason for this, one he thought of hours ago, but right now, he's pretty sure he's doing it just to get it done. (Oh, and to make him feel better about planning to never run without being either chasee or chaser. That too.)

Shoot, there was a whole bevy of stories on the "fatness" of athletes a few months ago, with NBA players getting hit particularly hard.

Of course, the NBA is, as a whole, much, much, much, much more athletic than pro baseball. If any pro sport is likely to have athletes whose bodies actually resemble the bodies of typical Americans, The Ford thinks it'll be baseball.

So, here goes.... the BMI values for all 40 players on the Indians' 40-man roster.

Standard disclaimer: BMI is a reliable indicator of total body fat, which is related to the risk of disease and death. The score is valid for both men and women but it does have some limits. The limits are:
It may overestimate body fat in athletes and others who have a muscular build.
It may underestimate body fat in older persons and others who have lost muscle mass.

BMI Categories:
Underweight = <18.5
Normal weight = 18.5-24.9
Overweight = 25-29.9
Obesity = BMI of 30 or greater

Rafael Betancourt 6-2 200 25.7
Andrew Brown 6-6 230 26.6
Paul Byrd 6-1 190 25.1
Fernando Cabrera 6-4 220 26.8
Fausto Carmona 6-4 220 26.8
Jason Davis 6-6 225 26.0
Jake Dittler 6-4 220 26.8
Danny Graves 6-0 200 27.1
Jeremy Guthrie 6-1 200 26.4
Jason Johnson 6-6 225 26.0
Cliff Lee 6-3 190 23.7
Matt Miller 6-3 215 26.9
Guillermo Mota 6-4 210 25.6
Edward Mujica 6-2 220 28.2
Rafael Perez 6-3 185 23.1
C.C. Sabathia 6-7 290 32.7
Scott Sauerbeck 6-3 200 25.0
Brian Slocum 6-4 200 24.3
Jason Stanford 6-2 200 25.7
Jake Westbrook 6-3 200 25.0
Bob Wickman 6-1 240 31.7
Ryan Garko 6-2 225 28.9
Victor Martinez 6-2 195 25.0
Kelly Shoppach 6-0 220 29.8
Michael Aubrey 6-0 195 26.4
Ronnie Belliard 5-8 195 29.6
Aaron Boone 6-2 200 25.7
Ben Broussard 6-2 220 28.2
Andy Marte 6-1 190 25.7
Jhonny Peralta 6-1 195 25.7
Eduardo Perez 6-4 240 29.2
Ramon Vazquez 5-11 170 23.7
Casey Blake 6-2 210 27.0
Jason Dubois 6-5 220 26.1
Franklin Gutierrez 6-2 180 23.1
Todd Hollandsworth 6-2 225 28.9
Jason Michaels 6-0 205 27.8
Grady Sizemore 6-2 200 25.7
Brad Snyder 6-3 200 25.0
Designated Hitters
Travis Hafner 6-3 240 30.0

The results?
5 players of normal weight, 3 obese players, and the other 32 are simply overweight.
Of course, 13 of those "overweight" players are close enough to being under 25 (under 26, with added muscle mass from, y'know, being vague athletes), that we could reasonable add them to the "normal weight" category. And if we do apply the same "margin of error" to the obese, well, Travis Hafner -- "Pronk" to his buddies -- reverts to "overweight."

Of course, you could argue that anyone nicknamed "Pronk" deserves to be in the "obese" category, and The Ford wouldn't disagree, The Ford being an agreeable sort of fellow.

So...let's call it 18 "normal" players, 20 "overweight" players and 2 obese ones. (Notably, the Tribe's three "BMI--y-est" players are possibly the Tribe's three best players. Or at least the Tribe's three most decorated players. (The Ford's willing to allow for the possibility that Grady "I was going to be a Husky, so, really, all my decisions should be questioned" Sizemore might just be a better all-around player than Bob Wickman. Y'know, if you like things other than saves.)

Maybe that should be Barry Bonds' (BMI: 29.3) excuse.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

The Ford has criticized Frank Robinson before.

Frank Robinson is not a good manager.

And yet...

The Ford won't be criticizing Robinson around Joey Eischen any time soon, if only for this line: "There's nobody that likes me in this clubhouse more than Frank," Eischen said. "I know that. And he knows that I'll break anybody's neck for him. That's unwavering."

The Ford wonders if he might now know why Alfonso Soriano decided to play second base for the Nats.

Y'know, The Ford spends a lot of his time campaigning for the use of words as they were meant to be used.

Like, if you're trying to impugn someone's sexual mores, don't use the word "whore," unless you're actually stating/implying that someone exchanges sexual services for money.

Really, there's plenty of other words that can insult someone AND be accurate at the same time.

The Ford brings this up because he overheard a gal at The Official Bar discussing how both she and her girlfriend had suffered from a cold.

Now, are they simply girls who are friends -- as in "You go, girlfriend!" -- or are they dating?

His gaydar being seriously subpar, The Ford has no way to differentiate between the two, short of actually asking embarassing followup questions.

And The Ford prefers not to do that in places with plenty of bottles that could be broken in sharp, potentially hazardous pieces.

The Ford could blame this confusion on the increased acceptibility of lesbian relationships, but he never likes to criticize the notion of lesbian relationships.

And so he'll blame people's general laxness at using words as they're defined.
Mostly because he's found that lax people are much less likely to stab him with broken beer bottles.

Even if their girlfriends recommend it.

Friday, April 21, 2006

More SUNshine girls, many of whom are equally, um ,attractive, as yesterday's batch.

(Yeah, you may be thinking the only point of this post is to show more scantily clad women, but really, the only point is so The Ford can use "whom" properly. "Lapsed English major," my ass.)


Who's the top? Well, that's tough to say, but Edmonton's last once more. Are they the Arizona Cardinals/Tampa Bay Devil Rays/L.A. Clippers/Florida Panthers of SUNshine girls?

Sure looks that way, The Ford says.

Buck up, Edmonton. At least you've got a big-ass mall. And, Canada's largest planetarium?

He's not saying the crotch is driving the bus, but The Ford will be the first to admit that his brain usually doesn't get the first call on the blood in his body.

Which is why he's so glad to see these stills on the pro cheerleader blog. Cause if he saw video of the Houston Texans cheerleader tryouts, he'd probably be restricted to his chair for a good 30 minutes.

But thanks to the magic of still photography, he's able to chuckle at the charming ladies of Houston with all the ironic glee of a would-be hipster.

'Cause, really, if this photo is turning you on... gosh...

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Oh, Canada.

Well, Canada, it's time to put your semi-national tab chain, the Sun, to the test.
It's time for the first-ever Sunshine-Girl-Off! (OK, the name needs a bit of work, but still, the idea's solid...)
There's 5 Sun tabloids, scattered throughout Canada -- Ottawa, Toronto, Edmonton and Calgary and Winnipeg. (Vancouver also has a newspaper called The Sun, but it's a broadsheet, challenged by a tab called The Province. Apparently neither has a Sunshine Girl. Both share a Web domain, making them likely unrelated to the rest of the Suns.)

Each features a daily pin-up girl generally found in the city, along the lines of the Page 3 girls in England but always clothed, or at least partially so.

The Ford has been bashing Edmonton of late for their lackluster women, but are they really the worst, or has The Ford simply been placing all Canadian women on a pedestal?

We'll attempt to answer that here, without slipping into the royal plural too often.

Ottawa: "Tina recently spent a couple of weeks working on her tan in Costa Rica. "

Toronto: "Be careful what you say to SUNshine girl Lucy - her hobbies include martial arts. This brown-eyed Scorpio finds sincerity and a good sense of humour appealing in a mate. "

Winnipeg: "Single Melanie prefers a man with a sense of humour. This blue-eyed Aquarius enjoys walks with her dog Jake and sports like volleyball and hockey. "

Of course, Melanie was also Edmonton's SUNshine girl on Saturday. As they told us: Melanie's aiming to get a degree in political science. Maybe she can help make sense of what they're doing in Ottawa. "

Edmonton: "Sheri is a fun-loving lass who enjoys a variety of sports, hanging out with friends and playing the Sun's Beach Bingo. "

Calgary: "Tara will be at ringside for King of the Cage Karnage Saturday night at the Stampede Corral. Get your tickets now! "

So, who's the hottest? Well, to The Ford's eyes, it's Winnipeg's Melanie, just ahead of Toronto's Lucy. Edmonton's Sheri comes in dead last in the competition. Tough luck, Sheri. Maybe your Oilers will do well in the playoffs.

Wait, what's that? They're playing the Wings? Oof. Maybe not.

Of course, Winnipeg's Melanie is also Edmonton's Melanie, so he supposes he can't entirely mock Edmonton for its lack of hotties.

He'll just have to relay on, y'know, its Edmonton-ness....

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

The most frustrating thing about watching your fantasy baseball team online on your day off? (Aside, from, naturally, realizing you're a HUUUUMONGOUS dork. But The Ford figured that out a while ago, so it's no biggie now.)

That would be realizing the Frank Robinson may be a moron.

Yes, he's got 50 years in baseball, numerous MVP awards, and several managing jobs.

Nevertheless, it'd be nice for him to realize that just because a pitcher CAN throw 140+ pitches, he doesn't HAVE to in every game.

Pitcher who's been a little rocky this year works seven solid innings, enough to get you a 3-run lead, gets the first out in an inning, and then promptly allows a double. Do you leave him in?
Pitcher's thrown about 90 pitches, and he frequently tops 130 in a game. But your bullpen's pretty rested. You're only 5 outs from a win.

Still, he gave up a double. He's probably done, right?

No, no, let's leave him in.

What? He gave up a 2-run home run? Shocking.

But let's still leave him in. Oh, a 4-pitch walk.

Gosh, maybe he's tired. Or ineffective. Now it's time to bring in a reliever.


You couldn't have done this two batters ago, right after the double? ('Cause you had to have a reliever warming up, right? No manager goes into the eighth inning with a three-run lead without at least one guy warming up in the pen. Right?)


Meanwhile, Ned Yost, facing almost the exact same situation, watches his pitcher give up a homer in the eighth, his first hit in several innings, and brings in a reliever. Who'd been warming up for a while. Who ended the damn inning with a strikeout.

What do we take from this? That Ned Yost is smarter than Frank Robinson, at least in this situation? Check. That the Brewers are much more likely to have a good season than the Nationals? Check. That The Ford is gonna think long and hard about picking up Nationals(especially pitchers) from now on, considering this and the whole Ryan Church/Brandon Watson mess? Double check.

(And thus ends "Fantasy Baseball Dork Theater." Thank you.)

The Ford could be running right now.

He knows this because he has several friends who delight in telling him all about how much they enjoy running, even when they don't really enjoy it. How there are many times they really didn't want to run, but then they did, and it was awesome, man. Just really awesome. Dude.

The Ford paraphrases, of course.

Of course, The Ford, like every lazy lout you've ever met, likes to reply to these heartfelt entreaties to physical exertion with a big, "Eh."

See, the way The Ford figures it, the main advantage of adulthood -- possibly the only advantage of adulthood, considering the drastic rise in overhead costs -- is that when he doesn't want to run 7 miles, he usually doesn't. He consider it a major perk, in the same league as how he no longer has to write term papers.

In that spirit, The Ford presents other recently discovered perks of adulthood:

1.) The Smiths
The Ford formally apologizes for blowing off all the friends who recommended the Morissey-fronted band, though he again reiterates that the best way to spread love for a band and its lyrics is NOT doing a piss-poor imitation of the lead singer. You. Are. Not. Morrissey.
Accept this, and we'll all live a little longer and a little happier.

2.) Joel Stein
Growing up, The Ford loved Mr. Stein when he was writing for Time, and finding an issue with both a column and a full-fledged article by him was like hitting the lottery. OK, the geek lottery, but still...
Well, now Stein is writing about once a week for the L.A. Times, giving that paper two of The Ford's favorite columnists. (You must feel the love for T.J. Simers. Or else The Ford will break out his own Morrissey impression.)
Stein's so good, The Ford's even willing to allow him the obvious copyright infringment on his personal website, "The Joel," mostly because he's pretty sure that if it came down to it, TheStein was probably around a bit before The Ford, but also because any man who goes by his full man and a "the" is a mighty man indeed.

3.) Canadian women.
The Ford has gone on about the frequent hotness of said women (as well as the hotness deficit Edmonton seems to suffer) until even he's sick of it. That said, apparently Canadians are much cooler with "the flashing" than American women. (Possibly explaining the famous quote "It is wonderful to feel the grandness of Canada in the raw.," by Emily Carr, female Canadian artist and author.)
You could even write a newspaper article about it.
No really, you could.

4.) Cheerleaders.
OK, so they're not really a per of adulthood, but this lame seque gives The Ford a chance to point out a blog about professional cheerleaders, and, oddly enough, a story not contained in said blog. Oh. It's in Cincinnati. No wonder. The Ford's not sure even people in Cincy care what happens there. Still, put said people in near-skintight outfits "offer a new take on the traditional baseball uniform," and The Ford will care. (As will Adam Dunn, who noted, ""I think it's a great idea. It gets the fans into (the game) and gives us something to look at." Not to self: Don't bet on Adam Dunn making any heads-up plays at home this season.)
Anyway, when The Ford's scooping a pro-cheerleader blog on pro-cheerleader news, well, he feels pretty awesome.

Not as awesome as running 7 miles despite really not wanting to, but pretty sweet, all the same.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Quick thoughts (No, really. Wait, why are you laughing? The Ford can write short. Honest. Just wait.)

1.) Monday brought The Ford to his fifth Tigers game in six days. Aside from the general lack of sleep this causes, it's been a good week of games. Some close ones, some blowouts, and plenty of free swag. Aside from the schedule magnet and calendar The Ford got just for showing up early to both weekend games, The Ford was the lucky recepient of a free hot dog and "Chicken Little" DVD on Sunday, not one day after he'd been only five rows away from winning the very same thing. Monday brought a surprisingly large crowd in the CoPa's upper deck, so The Ford snuck into a seat just behind the dugout, just in time to catch a free T-shirt in the hand not holding a sub-par gyro. The Ford's got skills.

2.) While Brandon Inge's choice of Skee-Lo as his introductory music is easily the best, The Ford's developing a soft spot for Pudge Rodriguez' "Latino Heat."
A good song in its own right (depsite the, um, brilliant chorus of "Latinoooo..... HEAT!") it's also the theme of deceased WWE wrestler Eddie Guerrero.
Which raises the potential that some day The Ford might be at a game where Pudge comes up to bat, and instead of his song, the crowd hears "Joltin' Joe DiMaggio" as Ernie Harwell screams into the mike "My God, that's the Yankees' music!" And then Pudge picks up a folding chair and smacks Kenny Rogers over the head.
The Ford doesn't know how much he'd pay to witness such a scene, but he thinks it'd be a lot.

3.) No Norm Cash on the Tigers' wall of fame? Dude hit 399 home runs. But Willie Horton gets his freakin' number retired. Norm Cash went up to bat with a table leg once. A TABLE LEG. And he gets nothing but a plaque in a display honoring Tigers history prior to the CoPa. Which is also what Tony Clark gets. Go figure.

4.) More joy at CoPa fans being unable to judge home runs. Really, it's almost impossible, unless you just assume nothing is a home run. But then you end up getting shocked by the power of 380-foot shots to right field. Which is almost as embarassing as claiming a 400-foot shot to the CF's glove is gone right away.

5.) Not baseball related, but, well, it's quick.
Robotics and sex are merging together more and more.
The Ford would like this article more if it would have followed up more on the best line:
"The Iraq war ... was kind of a boom for our company."

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Sitting in The Official Bar after work, The Ford was struck by how many of his companions/barmates were smoking.


Smoking, the last The Ford heard, was seriously uncool. After all, folks keep outlawing it. Which, come to think of it, might be what's making it cool.

Then again, maybe smoking is uncool the way casual sex and binge drinking is cool; a little bit is fine, but we all have friends that push the lines too far, and then we're walking them into a bathroom of the opposite sex at 3 a.m.

(Note: The Ford is not actually endorsing casual sex OR binge drinking. Or even endorsing casual sex AND binge drinking. Though the two seem to go together often enough.)

Anyway, here's some thoughts on why smoking SHOULD be cool:
1.) Demonstrates mastery of fire.
Think about it; every cigarette lit suggests the unliklihood of civilization returning to a pre-fire stage when men were men, women were women, and pretty much everyone was food for wild animals. Bonus points for lighting a cigarette with matches. Double bonus points for lighting them with lightning or sticks rubbed together.

2.) Demonstrates high level of hand-eye coordination.
Again, the repetitive motion of bringing hand to mouth suggests one's coordination is excellent; perhaps this skill will be passed on to one's offspring, someday prducing a humanity skilled at bringing a paper tube from ashtray to lips. Assuming all smokers manage to reproduce before dying of the dozens of illnesses brought on by smoking.

3.) Cigarettes double as weapons in case of bar fight.
Granted, a lit cigarette is a pretty lame weapon in a fight against anyone other than an 8-year-old or a sleeping person. Unless you go for the eyes. This is just one of the reasons The Ford wears glasses: anti-cigarette technology. The Ford supposes a lighter could also double as a weapon, but it lacks reliability, unless your opponent has been kind enough to douse him- or herself in gasoline prior to challenging you.

4.) Yellowing skin/teeth of cigarette smokers possibly fashionable.
OK, not really, but yellow does go fairly well with blue, as color combinations go. And blue may or may not be "the new black," depending on how cool The Ford is.

5.) Increased resistence to weather.
Again, this skirts the idea of smokers creating a master race, but has anybody considering that by forcing almost all smokers to exit the building to get their fix, we're actually creating a group of people that fear no weather, save floods. (It extinguishes the cigarette, don'cha'know?) Not to mention they ENJOY lightning. (See #1)

So there you have it. It's probably a good thing smoking is so uncool, 'cause if it wasn't all we'd have to look forward to in 100 years is a race of supermen who spontaneously create fire and fear no rain.

Y'know, something like Washingtonians, but with cooler friends.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Look, The Ford's not gonna lie. There are many things that make his penis say, "Hey!" and his brain say, "Nay!"

This is simply the way the male body/brain ('cause who's to say they're connected?) works. Luckily, The Ford's had 26 years to suss this out. Pity the poor women who are just now catching on.

Anyway, yet another erection creater/deflater: This statue of Kate Moss.

The Ford doesn't really find Ms. Moss that attractive. If anything, her coke habit would probably be a budget breaker. Plus, who wants to date/bang a gal who makes you feel guilty for eating a piece of toast.

And yet, it's a sexually suggestive position. She's not entirely unattractive. The Ford is mired in a long, long dry spell.

The math adds up to some very conflicted feelings, feelings The Ford knows he should not feel toward sculpture, regardless of how it originates.

Someday, The Ford will post The Official Sculpture of The Official Blog of The Ford. But today is not that day, and this is not that sculpture.

Other thoughts

1.) Another day, another 1 p.m. Tigers game with The Ford in attendance.
One of the between-innings scoreboard features, akin to Seattle's Hydroplane Race or Portland's Feral Cat Race, is the Dunkin Donuts-sponsored race.
It doesn't really have a name; it's just a generic race (no Detroit landmarks in sight) between "Something-something Bagel," "Cuppy Coffe" and, "The Original Dashing Donut, with each contestant assigned to a specific section. Needless to say, this random assignment conveys quite a bit of loyalty to one's section's specified contestant.
Today, The Ford was cheering hard for the bagel, which, amazingly, actually won, earning The Ford a free coffee, a free donut, or $1 off a purchase sometime in the next two weeks. Of course, The Ford may not redeem said victory, since the only Dunkin' Donuts he's seen is a 20-minute drive away. Not insurmountable, but not quite justified by a free donut.
But, with the bagel's victory, two questions leaped to The Ford's mind:
A.) Does the bagel supplant Shawn Green as The Greatest Active Jewish Athlete?
B.) If so, if the bagel expected to take Yom Kippur off? Who fills in, in that case? Do they import a Canadian donut from Tim Horton's?

2.) The Ford has long been a promoter of nicknames. Indeed, for as long as The Ford has been blogging, he's been pushing nicknames: "The Bearded Michigander," "The Official Freaklet-Designer-Extraordinare-In-Residence of The Official Blog Of The Ford," "The Ford," really the list could go on for a while, if The Ford wasn't both running out of nicknames beginning with "The" and risking breaking the "Rule of Threes," beaten into him by a pretty decent comm studies professor.
But, as we can find in this story from The Washington Post, nicknames are cooler than ever.

3.) The Ford is tired of being told that nice guys finish first in dating. Granted, in the long run, they might. But who's getting to feel up the sweatermeat right now, while The Ford goes home along again, or ends up really just good friends with gals. Maybe The Ford's a bit bitter, but, y'know, bitter is the first step toward being a bad boy.

4.) Fame Canada
Y'know, The Ford was recently asked why he appears to be obsessed with "the Canadian weather girl," which he eventually figured out was a reference to the Edmonton Sun's Sunshine Girl. The answer? Well, you, dear reader, probably have a few derogatory answers to that, almost all of which are true, but there's this as well: The Ford expects a lot out of Canadian women. For much of his life, they've been a paragon of hotness, and not just because Vancouver has, like, 8 million strip clubs in its downtown. (The novelty of a downtown strip club has been killed by Portland, Ore., at first, and now, Detroit, where after a while, a strip club just becomes a really expensive place to get a beer. (Although, it's still cheaper than most dance clubs and/or martini bars. Go figure.)
Anyway, after a lengthy digression, The Ford's happy to report Canada's living up to The Ford's childhood standards.
Very nice work, Canada. Apparently not all your hot women live withing= 100 miles of the U.S. border. Keep on keepin' on.

5.) Clone High.
A great, great MTV cartoon, featuring the voices of pretty much the entire cast of Scrubs, plus Will Forte, who may be the most underrated active member of Saturday Night Live. Episodes are online on Youtube, but here's a nice, categorized link to the episodes.

It's on, Wessssssss-leyyyyyyy....

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Some thoughts on the Tigers' game The Ford has just returned from:

1.) Wednesday was like the bizarro Monday.
Instead of a game featuring the first-place Tigers coming off a strong showing, packed with drunk fans on a sunny day with tickets nearly impossible to get, The Ford got to attend a game with the second-place Tigers coming off a vaguely disappointing showing on a rainy day with tickets at half price.
Pretty sweet, actually. The Ford will take a $6 ticket for the first row of the upper deck (normally $12, but for some reason -- The Ford suspects it was the fear of a sub-5,000 crowd -- it was half price. Printed on the ticket and all.) any day of the week.

2.) Ushers.
Rather than start out in his assigned seat, which wasn't that bad to begin with, The Ford tried to sneak into the front row of the seats in the upper deck behind home plate, in a section missing an usher. Of course, when there's approximately 7 people in the upper deck, crowd management is not exactly a numbers game.
Naturally, three minutes before the game started, an usher approaches The Ford and asks to see his ticket.
No harm, no foul, The Ford returned to his assigned seat.
But this brought up one of The Ford's peeves. Bust him for swiping a seat if you want to, but for the love of God, hold people at the stairs during an inning. There is NOTHING more annoying than to be focused on the action on the field, only to have to stand up as some schmucks squeeze by you. Especially when there's three empty rows behind you that could be used for lateral moves within the section.

3.) One dumb thing.
OF course, the best part about getting bounced by the usher was probably that it gave The Ford an excuse to return to the concession stand where he'd just paid $4.50 for a large Dew. (Did The Ford mention that the CoPa's a haven for Pepsi lovers? Do the Dew, baby, cause that's the only way The Ford's getting up for a spread of 1 p.m. games over the next week.)
Yes, he'd paid the $4.50 for an oh-so-necessary Dew, and then walked away without said beverage, annoyed by having to wait 3 minutes for the cashier to make change from a 20. Yes, The Ford understands you have no quarters. With 2 minutes until the game starts, The Ford is willing to GIVE you quarters in exchange for a spare $1 bill. He can always find a place to put a $1 bill, y'know?
Luckily, with only 12 people in the upper deck, The Ford had no problem claiming his pop upon his return to the stand.

4.) Big Juan.
Holy crap. Juan Uribe, the White Sox shortstop, is listed at 220 pounds? Granted, he's 6 feet tall, but 220? That's a lot of shortstop, especially considering his sudden outburst of power the past two seasons. Hmm. Roid you very much?
(Really, who you you rather see take roids? Who's more harmful to baseball? Barry Bonds, who already had Hall-of-Fame skills/credentials? Or Juan Uribe, who's essentially a .250/10/60 hitter? That's the sorta brain teaser that'll stump The Ford for years.)

5.) Bigger Jim.
Holy crap, part two. Jim Thome is listed at 6-4, 245 pounds, numbers startlingly similar to The Ford's dimensions.
From now on, The Ford is to be described as "Thome-sized."
It's always a pleasant surprise when you find a pro athlete you're shaped like. Makes you feel like, had a few things broken differently, you'd be there, and they'd be here.
The Ford wouldn't mind pulling down some 40HR cheddar, y'know?
Although "Thus Sayeth The Thome" doesn't have quite the same ring.
Hmm. Maybe "Thome, from me." would be a better title. We'll keep working on it.

6. Big park.
It's nice to see The Ford's not the only person who's stumped by the CoPa's, um, spacious dimensions.
Thome CRUSHED a ball deep to center in the first inning, flying 415 feet as the crowd groan/roared, only to have it drop easily into the centerfielder's glove. Welcome back to the AL. (Of course, Thome lined a pitch into the right field stands, eight rows deep, the next time up. Welcome to the CoPa. Somebody learned his lesson.)
Throughout the game, almost anything hit to center drew a cheer from the crowd, before they realized that hitting the ball 400 feet doesn't get you anything but a walk back to the dugout at the CoPa.
This is not a new stadium, either. This is year 6 of the park. Shouldn't somebody be able to tell what's a home run by now?

7. Name that Tiger
The Ford has long used The Official Blog to stump for improved nicknames.
Obviously, someone is listening, since Chris Shelton's stunning opening to the season (Today, it was homer No. 6, a mammoth 2-run shot to center that everyone truly KNEW was gone.) has earned him the moniker, "Red Pop," a reference to his bright red/orange hair, his power stroke, and the most popular variety of Faygo, a Detroit pop company.
Really, it's the perfect storm of nicknames, where everything comes together in one amazing package.
So, when Shelton comes up in the sixth inning with a man on third, what does The Ford yell?
"C'mon, Shelly!"
"Shelly" is not a nickname. It's how first-base coaches address players they can't address as "Bobby." (The Ford likes to believe names ending in -y are the only ones first-base coaches can pronounce around the giant wad of gum, tobacco or sunflower seeds in their cheeks.)
And yet, somehow, "Shelly," and not "Red Pop" came out of The Ford's mouth.
Thus did The Ford complete the inevitable transition from boy to man to first-base coach.

8. Who's your Tiger?
So, the Tigers' marketing campaign this season is a series of commercials lauding individual players, with the slogan, "Who's your Tiger?" The Ford's early leader was Jeremy Bonderman, just to show some Washington-native love.
And then Brandon Inge came up to bat.
It's not so much that he's good. If anything, he's just slightly above-average, the type of Bobby Higginson-esque player that bad franchises fall in love with and then can't figure out why he's not earning $8 million a year in year 5 of his contract. Not bad, just not the guy you build the franchise around. There's a reason he was hitting ninth today.
But man, any dude who picks Skee-Lo's "I Wish" as his introductory music is, at least for a little while, The Official Tiger of The Official Blog of The Ford.
Most of the Tigers had pretty decent music selections -- plenty of salsa/Latino rap from the Hispanic players, and no rock/rap-metal from the rednecks in the lineup -- but ... Skee-Lo?
The Ford, too, wishes he was a bit taller. Wishes he was a baller. Wishes he had a girl who looked good. He would call her.
To know that Mr. Inge also harbors these secred desires, voiced so eloquently, well, it's enough to bond a feller instantly (and to make him pissed when Craig Monroe homers just before Inge comes to bat, thus wiping out his introduction music).
(Also notable: The Tigers broke out the "Bust A Move" during a White Sox conference on the mound during the game. Easily the best unexpected appearance of Young MC since, um, this one, I guess. Also, did you know Young MC has a degree in economics from USC? Impress your friends with that one, you will.)

9. The park.
It's a nice enough place to watch a game, but it's missing some of the basic amenities The Ford prefers. He's willing to overlook the out-of-town scoreboard that only shows 8 games at a time. But it's really annoying not to have anything showing either the current pitch count or the last pitch thrown. Sure, a radar gun is nice, but telling me a pitch is 85 mph doesn't tell me if it's a change-up or a curve. I need this info when I'm sitting in the outfield. Likewise, it'd be nice to see both teams' lineups at all times, rather than just the team that's batting. It's a little thing, but a big thing, y'know?
Other problems? A lack of drainage left about 2 inches of standing water in the front rows of every section at game time. Luckily, The Ford was wearing books in preparation for just such an event. But The Ford would have been out of luck if he'd had to set anything down, as it would have floated away down the aisle, borne back ceaselessly onto Woodward Avenue. Especially when the rains returned in the eighth inning, dropping two more inches of water in a matter of minutes. Really, the CoPa is the only part I've ever seen that needed its own flood control zone. (The rain was also notable in that The Ford totally caved to the rain, choosing to protect his new Tigers had with the heretofore unused "emergency" hood of his coat. The Ford had long held that, except in times of extreme cold, wearing a hat and using a hood was a redundancy on the level of wearing both belt and suspenders. And yet, when push came to shove, when rain came to wool cap, when years of ingrained, staid Pacific Northwesterner weather responses came up against a new $32(!) hat, well, the hat won, and the hood came out. On the plus side, the strings for the hood were a bright orange, adding another level of realism to the plausible impression of a Tigers fan I was doing.)
Overall, The Ford's got to give the CoPa a B-. A good park -- The Ford will be catching a lot of games there -- but there were way too many moments when The Ford wanted that extra bit of information but had to go without.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Sigh. The Ford has seen the future, and it is this.

Monday, April 10, 2006

Nine innings of the Tigers home opener:
1.) The Ford is a free-market failure.
He wasn't able to get Opening Day tickets the legal way, and so he arrived bright and early Monday to try and get a ticket from a scalper.
Just one problem. There were no scalpers. Plenty of people looking for tickets. Just no one had one they were willing to part with. It was probably a 20-1 ratio, also known as scalper heaven. The best part? People with tickets and people looking for tickets were using the exact same phrase: "Extra ticket?" with only slightly varied inflections. And thus almost every person -- generally with a few beers already down the hatch -- asking if someone had a spare ticket ran into someone asking the same thing, each thinking the other person was the answer to their prayers, then being cruelly disappointed while The Ford looked on in glee.
If The Ford can't get in, neither should anyone else.
It wasn't until The Ford had circled the park 1.5 times that he found anyone with a spare ticket. Idling up to him, The Ford, in his best "cool cat" imitation, coolly inquired how much a ticket would set him back.
Granted, it was for a seat in the lower back, just behind the dugout. But $150? For the Tigers?Um, no.
Of course, this turned out to be the going rate for almost all tickets.
By the second inning, The Ford found a mezzanine ticket for $100.
By the third inning, The Ford finally talked a scalper into getting him a ticket to the game for $80.
Of course, said scalper didn't actually HAVE said ticket. He had to go find another scalper -- or another fan -- willing to sell him said ticket at a price he could make a profit off of at $80. Meanwhile, The Ford was instructed to stand in place, while his friendly neighborhood scalper buddy did the legwork for him.
(Plan A: Get a $8-$10 ticket for $20; Plan B: $8-$10 ticket for $40; Plan C: $5 ticket for $80. The Ford's negotiating skills obviously needed some work. Though not as much as the schmuck who, upon hearing one of the scalpers -- a scalper surrounded by 4 other people negotiating for a single ticket -- walks up to the scalper, finds out he's got one ticket and says, "I have to have it." Folks, if Comerica is scalper heaven, this dude is the fella paving the streets with gold. Scalper drops the $150 bomb on the kid, well after we'd all talked him down into the $100 range. Kid walks away shellshocked, apparently expecting his expression of desperation would get him a sizable discount.)
Actually, it was a decent offer, if you were willing to overlook the inherent lunacy of paying $80 for a likely standing-room-only ticket to see 6 innings of baseball from two teams he didn't care that much about. When he could just save his money and buy tickets to the next 4 Tigers day games this week.As he stood on the grass next to the stadium, listening to the cheers of the fans who weren't inept in a free-market economy, he pondered all the things $80 could buy, including (but not limited to) 10 late-night meals, 8 cheap Tigers tickets, 5 normal nights at The Official Bar, 4 lap dances, 3 pairs of pants, 2 full tanks of gas...The Ford's mind boggled at the possiblities.
And so, when his scalper had moved well away, still trying to peddle his $150 dugout seats, The Ford wandered off to work to watch the game on a tiny TV and blog away. You, the readers, are the only winners on this day. Other than, you know, the White Sox.

2.) Detroit has its own celebrity fans.
Sure, you already knew about Jerome Bettis, who was kind enough to show up and throw out the first pitch. (Well, Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick threw out the first pitch as well, but who's counting first pitches.) But an even bigger celebrity was in the stands: Jeff Daniels.Daniels, who lives in Chelsea, Mich., (Just on the other side of Ann Arbor, thankfully sparing everyone reading this the de rigeur explanation of Michigan's geography using the left hand.) was sitting in the stands like a regular guy, complete with Tigers hat and full beard, taking pictures with his digital camera. Pretty sweet. Of course, it would have been sweeter if The Ford had been in the park to tell Daniels, "Dude, "The Squid and The Whale" was one of the best movies of last year. You got screwed by the Academy." The Ford would like to think Daniels would have appreciated that much more than a Dumb and Dumber line.

3.) Spring has sprung. And so is The Ford.
Yes, there's no denying it. The days are getting longer, and a young man's thoughts turn to love. Or lust. Or maybe just bewilderment at how the douche "sideline reporter" has a hot girlfriend, while The Ford is going stag. I mean, seriously, he's interviewing her in the stands DURING THE GAME, as she sits on his lap and prattles on about enjoying the guys in tight pants. The Ford's not saying this is the type of girlfriend he's looking for, but, c'mon. The dude has bleached-blond hair standing in an 2-inch spike cut. Guys who look like the unholy offspring of an albino and a porcupine should not have hot-if-mildly-idiotic girlfriends. The possiblity for little idiot porcupine babies is too great.

4.) Ain't no woman like a Detroit woman.
Damn, there are some fine ladies in Detroit, all drinking heavily by 11 a.m. It would be a situation made for The Ford, were he remotely competent at talking to women in bars. On days he has to go to work. And he's not even including the pack of strippers he got caught walking behind on the way to the park. ("But," you ask The Ford, "how did you know they were strippers?" When they're all wearing orange hot pants that leave fully 50 percent of their ass cheeks hanging out, are hitting on every cop in visual range, and are urging every man within a 2-block radius to come see them later tonight, The Ford finds 34+22+36=exotic dancer.)

5.) Comerica Park is HUUUUUUGE.
OK, The Ford has now misjudged 5 fly balls in 4 innings of play at Comerica Park -- also known as the CoPa to those able to infuse their words with mid-word capital letters -- convinced each one was a homer, only to have each one land safely in the glove of an outfielder well in front of the warning track.

6.) Speed kills.
A shockingly quick game, lasting just more than 2 hours. The Ford's a little sad he didn't get into the game, since he would have been able to watch the whole thing before work began, but at the same time, it would have pushed the ticket price into the $40/hour range. The Ford can only think of a few things he's willing to pay $40/hour for, and most of them involve alcohol and scantily-clad women. And even that's a stretch.

7.) Line 'em up.
Reports from inside the stadium had beer lines stretching approximately 11 outs. In a 54-out game. Nothing like spending 20 percent of your time in the park waiting for a single $8 dollar beer. The Ford would suggest beer scalpers, but prices on a 40 might hit $200.

8.) Rock on, McCarthy.
Hey, Brandon McCarthy's in the game! He's from Colorado Springs. Went to Cheyenne Mountain High School. Which probably has absolutely no meaning to anyone else, but last season, with McCarty getting the occasional spot start for the Sox, The Ford was driven nuts with daily updates on McCarthy's status, and with having to give hed specs that could fit the words "McCarthy," "Cheyenne," and "Mountain", plus some sort of predicate. Just seeing McCarthy in the game today and realizing that he doesn't have to think twice about it is almost enough to make The Ford's day. Almost.

9.) A beaten manIs there anything more frustrating than finding out a coworker got tickets at face value, thanks to some friends, and had a spare after a friend tripped on a curb and broke his nose 20 minutes before the game. No, The Ford doesn't think so.
No, The Ford's mistaken. What's worse is running into a coworker coming back from the Tigers game as you're walking into work after failing in your one goal for the day, and finding out he had a pass for the game that he used for only two innings, and that they weren't checking IDs at the door?

Well, the game's over -- Tigers lose, 5-3, and it's time for The Ford to get to work. Tomorrow's another day, and the Tigers have another day game on Wednesday. The Ford suspects scalper heaven will have run its course, at least around the CoPa this week.

OK, considering how often The Ford sits in judgment on the rest of the world, he should be willing to submit himself to the same judgment on occasion.

He's done stupider things than drive 9 miles southwest to try and find a Taco Bell, into the worst part of Detroit, passing Mexicantown (home to some of the greatest Mexican food in Michigan, 24 hours a day), and then upon finding it closed, retracing his route and going to a McDonald's just as the Magic Stick/Garden Bowl across the street is letting out from a Sunday night concert.

Did you know McDonald's is a favorite hangout for hipster kids just out of a concert? The Ford didn't, not until he sat for 30 minutes in the drive-thru lane. Thank goodness for Death Cab CDs and a U.S. atlas. Hours of enjoyment right there.

All because he wasn't smart enough to eat at home in the first place.

There's probably a lesson there, somewhere, but The Ford's too busy not thinking dirty thoughts about the cute girl he saw coming out of the club.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

The Ford knew the "casual encounters" section of Craigslist would, almost by defintion, consist of equal parts desperation and embarassment, but, um, wow.

Detroit's is filled with web cam ads ... wait for it ... ask you not to send any commercial e-mails to the posters....

Meanwhile, Chicago's is full of trannys and guys willing to pleasure straight guys.

(The Ford officially apoligizes for mocking The Official Freaklet-Designer-Extraordinare-In-Residence of The Official Blog Of The Ford. Jen, it's entirely understandable how you might always have trannys on the brain.)

And, of course, the occasional male visitor looking for no-strings-attached sex. The Ford's gotta think that if posting a message like that worked, well, the good ladies of ill repute in Chi-town would quickly be out of business.

Then again, as The Ford's fond of saying, it's really only gotta work once, and then you're homefree.

Which he assumes is the logic behind this optimistic posting.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Dear France:

Do you want to know why Americans occasionally hate you?


Cause The Ford can think of at least one reason.

You get Victoria Silvestadt and Carmen Electra on TV, and they agree to kiss.

And your stupid damn host is talking them through it the whole time in the loudest voice known to man.

In the future, when Playboy-level models are threatening to make out on TV, just shut the hell up and let them do it. Feel free to talk afterwards. There'll be time.

Trust The Ford on this. There's always time to analyze Carmen Electra and Victoria Silvestadt locking lips. Always.

But when it's happening, you could be quiet. Just. Shut. Your. Mouth. And. Enjoy.

Your occasional friend in blogging,
The Ford

This, of course, is the area The Ford walks through every night coming home from work.

Sometimes, The Ford is thinking, ignorance is bliss.

Eh, screw it. You live in Detroit, you get used to the notion that it's a city with a future on one block, and one step above a third-world country on the next block.

But at least the buses run.

So, too, will The Ford, should he happen to see anything resembling a drug deal or crack-smoking gathering.

Of course, considering his mouth-agape reaction to the first ladies of the night he saw in town, he's probably not quick enough to pick up on any drug deals anyway.

Here at The Official Blog, there are two known facts:
The Ford likes words.
The Ford likes breasts.

And so, in honor of those two givens, The Ford presents the world of breasts, from A-Z:

(Thanks to Cousin Mammy's World of Breast Euphemisms. There's plenty more where these came from, so check 'em out...)

A Apples
B Boobs
C Casabas
D Dirty pillows
E Eggplants
F Fun bags
G Gazongas
H Headlights
I Igloos
J Jugs
K Knockers
L Lungs
M Milk cans
N Nectarines
O Orbs
P Puppies
Q Queen Jewels
R Rack
S Sweater meat
T Tig 'ol bitties
U Udders
V Volcanos of love
W Watermelons
X [none]
Y Yayas
Z Zeppelins

Now, The Ford went mostly with the terms he's actually used and ignored the ones he's avoided.
Two things stand out: 1.) in man's search for euphemisms for breasts, he falls back on produce startingly often, and 2.) despite a millennia's worth of chances, he still hasn't come up with anything for X. Ironic, really, considering the prevalence of breasts in X-rated movies, not to mention that to be female, a person must have two X chromosomes.

So, The Ford presents The Official Euphemisms for Breasts Starting with 'X' of The Official Blog of The Ford:

1.) Xebecs -- A small three-masted Mediterrean boat isn't the best euphemism, but you can at least say, "Hey, look at the Xebecs (pronounced zee-becks) on her," and have folks have an idea of what you're pointing out. So, there's that.
2.) Xi -- a pain to pluralize, but this Greek symbol (the 14th letter of the Greek alphabet) looks like a bosom if you squint.
3.) Xenas -- not actually a word in and of itself, but it does conjure a pleasing reference to Lucy Lawless, whose Xenas weren't too shabby, if you happened to catch her running in her armored bustier.

Mmm....bouncing Xenas.....

It occurred to The Ford in one of his rare, rare visits to The Official Bar, that Fox Sports Net can, at times, be a spectaculary shitty network. Aside from its insistence that people want to wath "Best Damn Sports Show Period.", there's the question of what to show between that and actual games.

The Ford was sitting in the bar when FSN actually put on the air its LAS VEGAS REPORT.

The Ford is in Detroit.


Why does he care what's going on in Las Vegas?

Especially when the two items in the Las Vegas report focus on the 49ers team party -- featuring a special musical appearance by Huey Lewis (no word on whether The News showed up as well, though The Ford assumes they did.) -- and Tommy Lasorda's night out, which apparently involved attending a performance by The Pussycat Dolls.

Y'know, The Pussycat Dolls don't frequently show up in The Ford's, um, nocturnal fantasies, but when they do, he'd like if they could stay the hell away from Tommy Lasorda. Please.

The Ford once shared an elevator with Lasorda at a Rockies game. It was cool, especially the way everyone knew him and he seemed to know everyone. But that same Tommy, hanging out with The Pussycat Dolls?

Um, pass.

The Ford shouldn't laugh at "Detroit-in-ruins" jokes. And yet he does. Go figure.

Friday, April 07, 2006

New laptop, new music. At least, that's the plan for The Ford, as he subscribes to a major search engine's on-demand music service.

Good stuff overall, but there's an inestimable sadness that comes over The Ford when he sees how some of the top-20 songs are being spelled these days...

For example:
"I'm N Luv (with a stripper)"
"Lean wit it, rock wit it"

Apparently, artists are being charged by the letter for song titles.

Sigh. Can we just give the language back to the British? Sure, they can't speak it worth a damn, but they'll at least keep the written version sacred. (Ordinarily, Canadians would be The Ford's first choice, what with the clean accents, but their predilection toward inserting "U"s into words, and their support of Avril Lavigne's "Sk8er Boi" are worrisome in their own rights.

Oh yeah, the UPS guy arrived with The Official Computer of The Official Blog of The Ford today. Dude, I got a Dell.

He may or may not be piggy-backing on a local wireless network at this very moment.

No more fury, at least for a few hours, on until the tiny keyboard and uber-sensitive touchpad drive him up the wall.

But for now, it's all e-mails and blog posts from the privacy of his own home.

Damn, it feels good to be The Ford.

Another day, another friend request on myspace by emily.

The Ford is either flattered, or scared, especially since he's beginning to blame himself for not knowing who emilytease is.


Thursday, April 06, 2006

Being a former Colorado resident, The Ford probably has more respect for serious facial hair than your average blogger.

I myself once, and will likely once again have, had a beard.

Which is why The Ford likes to spotlight sporting facial of distinction.

First up: John Smoltz.
Referred to in a recent publication of The Official Newspaper of The Official Blog of The Ford as "The Bearded Michigander," a brilliant nickname if ever The Ford heard one, he's as good a place as any to start. Not a stunning beard on the level of Jake Plummer or Matt Morris, but notable for its longevity.

Second: Matt Morris:
Sure, he's trimmed it since going from St. Louis to San Francisco, but this is still a major amount of face fur. How has he had this for so long, on so many of The Ford's fantasy baseball teams, without The Ford knowing he was carrying this soup strainer around.

Truly, a question for the ages.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Things that make feel like less of a perv:

For what it's worth, I mostly agree with the poll.
Though.... Betty Boop at #5? C'mon!
Betty Rubble at #2? Just right...

OK, now that you're all scarred from the implied position of Ms. Ryan's bosom, it's time to get down to business...

The Dream is dead, part 2
Yes, Ms. Benson is going back to her hubby, leaving The Ford to lust after other quasi-celebrities and ex-strippers. How will he survive? (Probably not by looking up Meg Ryan anymore.)

The other great thing on this link? That the NYT has a story on it at all, and that they don't seem to be sure which sport it goes under. There's a clevage/basketballs joke in here somewhere, but I'm not gonna go looking for it, especially since we've got...

Germany's hot TV host
Yes, apparently Mr. Cruise is making the rounds over there, over there. No word on whether he jumped up and down on the couch there as well. Though if she did...well, it's a powerful argument for satellite TV. And double-sided tape. Speaking of buns... (OK, we weren't, but The Ford's tapped out on segues right now. Come back tomorrow for the eventual edit.)...

Five guys and their burgers
I just like random biz stories about fast food, and I really want to try one of these burgers. We need more fast-food control freaks out there.

Finally, because The Ford's feeling a bit guilty about inflicting Meg Ryan and Tori Spelling on his readers in the past week, we've got...

The Dream is dead, Part 3
Shocking, really. The Heat Dancers DESTROYED the Kings Dance Team, 77-23, despite their promise of a free car wash. Really, when you're Miami, and you can trot out a lineup of gals who look like Nip/Tuck extras, you're not gonna have to work too hard to bounce the Sac-Town gals, even if they're promising lap dances and trotting out the camel toe. Which they weren't.

Ironic, really, since the man the squad was named for, John W. Danceteam, hated Miami. Hated it with a passion. Of course, he lived in the days before Spandex, so that's probably understandable.
Yes, John W. Danceteam. The Dance Team is named after the way he would wriggle and prostrate himself for the local baseball team, the Sacrameno Bay Stockings. (The 'T" was later added in an effort to make the town's name longer than "Hollywood." Unfortunately, no one counted the letters in "Los Angeles." And you wonder why copy editors are so important these days.)
Yeah, hosiery was big in those days, making the lack of Spandex -- or any artificial fibers -- that much more cruel.

Oh yeah, did The Ford mention that Scarlett Johansson is hot? Can't remember if he did. So here's a photo...

The good folks at FHM certainly figured it out, making this the only time in my life I'll respect FHM more than Esquire.

Esquire, you may remember, picked Jessica Biel as the sexiest woman in the world.

Jessica Biel? Really? Jessica. Biel. This still brings The Fury. Jessica Biel. For six months, The Ford waited, and he gets Jessica Biel. Not even in the top 3 of Jessicas, frankly. Here, now, are The Official Jessicas of The Official Blog of The Ford:

1: Jessica Alba.

2: Jessica Simpson.

3: Jessica Rabbit. (The Ford's bloggin' it old-school...)

'Nuff said...

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Pretty much the ultimate in erection creation and erection destruction, all in one photo.

The male libido is an odd thing, to be sure...

Y'know, The Ford was willing to overlook the fact that EmilyTease was not really a friend of his when she sent him a friend request on myspace.

He was even willing to overlook the fact that he didn't know her at all. Willing to overlook the fact that she apparently ran a softcore porn site.

After all, she's a nearly naked woman, and The Ford needs more nearly naked women in his life, even if it's only tangientally.

But when The Ford got ANOTHER friend request from EmilyTease tonight?

Well, The Ford's feeling a bit hurt.

I mean, if you're gonna spam people as an advertisement for a Webcam, you could at least have the decency to spam them only once.

You're dead to me, EmilyTease. Y'hear me? Dead.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Sigh. Sometimes The Ford wishes he worked at a paper that covered the Rangers, just so he could write this headline about a Texas pitcher picking up the knuckleball:
"R.A. Dickey, R.A. knuckleballer."

And then I would move far, far away...

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Sad to say, but the most valuable function on The Ford's cell phone might be the calculator. There's just something cool about preemptively figuring out tips on however many beers you're planning on drinking. Or figuring out how much of your weekly budget goes toward beers, and how much goes to tipping the hot bartender.

Geekiness is good.

Not good? That the already late-starting MLB opener is now in a perpetual rain delay... Welcome to the East Coast.

Other sadnesses? Seeing Jon Lovitz doing commercials for Subway aping his "Thespian" SNL character. Then again, I hated that character. So it's not so much the abuse of a beloved character as it is seeing a hated character about a million times on TV. (If The Ford had cable right now.) Next up, Martin Lawrence doing "She'neh'neh" for Long John Silver's.

You've been warned.

Thoughts as The Ford does some late night refining of a baseball preview section...

1.) How much does switching to Daylight Savings Time suck for us night folk? Sure, we get the hour back in the spring, but do bars stay open later then? Nooooo... Instead, hardworking folks like The Ford go into the office at 1 a.m. and end up leaving at 6 a.m., despite only doing 4 hours of work. It's tough to say, but sunlight is overrated. Screw the farmers. The Ford wants his sleep.

2.) Following the suggestion of a loyal TSTF reader (you know who you are, and if you don't there's nothing The Ford can do for you...), The Ford went grocery shopping Saturday. Got everything he needed, save his beloved turkey/cheddar Lunchables. While the store had them, they were selling for $2. Meanwhile, The Official Vending Machine Item of The Official Blog of The Ford sells for $1.75 in the Freep/DetNews machines. So, someone's trying to gouge The Ford; either it's the supermarket in Hazel Park, or the vending machine folks here. It's tough to say, but at least The Ford might benefit from his frequent lack of planning when it comes to dinner between deadlines.

3.) The Ford accepted his first friend invitation on myspace from someone he doesn't know. Is The Ford open to meeting new people, or simply caving in under the peer pressure of having the fewest "friends" among his peers? It's tough to say, but if you're an unknown woman with a myspace photo showing little-to-no clothing, The Ford already likes you. (Not so much, random band glomming onto The Ford's Michigan location...)

Saturday, April 01, 2006


The dream is dead.

The Sonics Dance Team was eliminated yesterday. The Kings team, despite never getting more than 54% of any of their chest-to-chest matchups, advanced to the Finals, aka, "The Get Whupped by the Heat Dancers" round. (At last glance, the Heat were leading 82-18. This is ugly, embarassing and oddly hot. All at the same time.)

I blame Trisha. Her crazy eyes completely neutralized any advantage the Sonics team was gaining in girl-next-door points.

Go Heat.

And if y'all do win, remember who was behind you every step of the way.

Anna Benson's been semi-free for 24 hours, and she's yet to call. I'd be more bummed if I didn't know I can just hit on ex-strippers (and not-so-ex-ones) here. Hmm...The Ford now has plans for Saturday night.

Oh, and in extraordinarily non-breaking news, it appears that Spokane and Everett both have arenafootball2 expansion teams. Sweet.

Of course, they couldn't be there when I was in town, oh no. The Ford feels mild fury, alleviated by the thought that, frankly, it's a minor league for a minor league.

So, not so big a deal.